How complicated should a kitchen faucet be?

That is the question I have asked myself twice in the last two months. We had our kitchen remodeled a year ago and we allowed my daughter to decide what faucet we should buy. To no one’s surprise, she choose the Moen MotionSense which is one of those fancy, hands free models. And while this sounds like a great idea, there is one problem. It has broken twice in the last two months. And as anyone who has experienced this knows, not having a working kitchen faucet is no fun.

As part of the remodeling project we bought all new appliances and to be perfectly honest, we aren’t real happy with any of them. The computerized water and ice dispenser in the refrigerator stopped working after 4 months and it took 6 months before we had a fully operational refrigerator again. (That’s a story for another time.) And the new washer and dryer are so complicated I did something I never do. I bought the extended warranty. A good friend of mine works at an appliance store and he told me that I will probably have issues at some point, and repair costs will be very expensive.

Call me crazy, but at the end of the day I just want something that works. Yes, turning on a faucet without touching it is cool. That is until you have to go a couple of weeks without a functioning faucet.

Have we reached the point where technology has crossed the line and is now making things more complicated than needed and basic functionality is being compromised? I’m starting to think so, it least with appliances.

Which brings me to the web. IMHO, we need to return to a time where the focus is on simplicity and functionality. Too many web sites are way too complex, especially from a coding perspective. The home page on one site I recently reviewed had 4000 lines of HTML code and the main CSS file was over 1500 lines long. Add in the overuse of JavaScript and a number of unneeded database calls and it is no wonder the page was so slow. My guess is that technical maintenance of this site is complex and that there are times part of it doesn’t work.

When I first started teaching web classes in the 1990’s, the focus was on utility. I expounded on the KISS principle. Keep It Simple Stupid. The tools at our disposal to build websites today are amazing and the features and functionality incredible, but never lose focus on what really matters. The site needs to work, and work well.

Meanwhile, I am waiting for yet another visit from my plumber.